The Spiral Grained Pencil Pine
Written in 2016
Editors Note: This article by Euan Ferguson is, in Euans' words, "completely fictional. I wrote it one tired night whilst doing the Overland Track in Tasmania. During that day we'd seen a number of dead and fallen pencil pines that seemed to have an anti-clockwise spiral texture on the sapwood. The group asked me what caused this spiraling. I have no idea what causes it, so I made up this story.
Whilst a fictional story, it nevertheless contains some interesting and challenging messages for readers, natural resource managers, politicians and the wider community as follows:-
- as Euan has written, ... "Our duty for caring for our forests extends beyond the years to generations .... the life of the forest is measured in generations, not just in years.", and
- Old growth trees are a valuable and important part of our native forest ecosystems, but they eventually die hopefully with another generation of younger trees following, some of which will become old growth trees.